Boris Johnson's terrible polling numbers after 'Partygate'

Labour surge to biggest lead over Tories in nearly a decade

A member of the international media holds up a newspaper front page outside 10 Downing Street as Boris Johnson's polling rating slumps after Partygate. EPA
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Support for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has nosedived in recent weeks amid public anger over news reports of lockdown parties at Downing Street.

Latest polling figures, released by YouGov on Thursday, make for grim reading for the Conservative Party and its members.

They show Labour's vote share at 38 per cent and Tories languishing in second place at 28 per cent, a drop of 5 per cent in the past week alone. Labour's 10-point margin represents its biggest lead over its main rival in nearly a decade.

This compares with April 2020, when 52 per cent of the electorate said they would vote for the Tories, compared with just 28 per cent for Labour.

While few Tories have publicly called for the prime minister's resignation, many will be privately alarmed by the slump and will be asking whether a new leader could re-energise their party.

Here's what the state of play currently looks like in Westminster:

Boris hits new lows as British public slowly warms to Starmer

Boris Johnson's own personal popularity — which has never been particularly high — has hit new lows following “Partygate”, while Keir Starmer has seen his support climb, albeit slowly.

Data shows 56 per cent of voters say they disapprove of the PM's job so far, while just 23 per cent approve. In December, another poll found that 69 per cent viewed him as untrustworthy.

Of the current candidates, YouGov polling found that 35 per cent of voters think Mr Starmer would make the best prime minister while just 23 per cent believe Mr Johnson fits the bill.

Who do you think will win?

While many are increasingly looking at alternatives to the Conservatives, the path to office for Labour is not entirely clear cut as it attempts to win back seats lost to disaffected voters in the north of England.

Most voters remain sceptical of Labour's chances in the next election, despite recent favourable data.

At present, just 3 per cent of voters believe that Labour will achieve a large majority in the next election. Ten per cent of voters think there will be a hung parliament resulting in a Labour government, and 17 per cent expect that gridlock in Westminster will favour the Tories.

Excluding the “don't knows”, the majority believe that a small Conservative majority is the most likely outcome (27 per cent), although this has slipped markedly in the past week.

Updated: January 13, 2022, 5:18 PM